The Zero Years, 2005
What was supposed to be a true hand-to-heart scornfully dejected account of four government handled Greek prostitutes comes across as a vain, indolent, high brow artsy soft-core porno by the neo-noir transcending, experimental artist Nikos Nikolaidis.
Overflowing with Nikolaidis’s trademarks like the mental and sexual disorder in this situation, the symbolism in the film is placed with lesser judgment using nudity, desolate set-design and audacity to appease the peer-auteurs, perhaps.
Blending film-noir, where most characters are people who like to remain hidden behind shadows, walls, inside rooms and plain old existentialism, Nikolaidis seems to be working towards something that does not transpire, even marginally, even for all those hard-hitting and brilliant albeit unusual parables he is known to have carried the burden of. But not in The Zero Years, where unconventional themes are run down in plain sight.
The actors’ isolation is not effective enough, the anti-sex message is lost somewhere in between raw eggs being smashed on bare breasts, a leaking roof and superimposed imagery.
No love lost.
I cannot imagine comparing this film with Salo or The 120 Days of Sodom, (1975) like how most are convinced.